Joined: 09 May 2007
|Posted: Mon Feb 12, 2018 12:12 pm Post subject: Vietnam - The land of beauty
|Xin chào Vietnam !
detailed blog & pics on the link
A look at our travels in Vietnam
And so we embarked on the trip that we have been planning for and laughing off as one of our “dream” projects. It was when we finally had the bookings in place (for the 2nd time. Don’t ask how…) that I started educating myself about the countries we were going to visit! All that I knew about Vietnam was some random reference in Hollywood movies “when I was in ‘Nam”. Beyond that it was just an Asian country located somewhere. I did not know its exact location even when yours truly has visited its neighbor – Cambodia in 2016! I am hopelessly challenged in my geographical know-how.
From my google knowledge, I knew a bit more about Modern Vietnam and what I read convinced me that am visiting a nation of some bad-a$$ people who won the war against the “Imperialist America” with some sheer ingenuity ! So I was prepared to witness some hard-core communist visuals and propaganda. All of that was reinforced the moment we touched down at Ho Chi Minh Airport. We had a pre-approval letter from Vietnam that mentioned that we can collect visa at airport. We reached the visa on arrival counter only to find innumerable people in waiting – few were standing, others seated in a haphazard manner and generally looked ruffled. There was just 1 queue in front of 1 window that seemed to be accommodating all the visitors. There were people who had old passport number mentioned on the visa pre-approval letter who actually told the Vietnamese Officer “How does it matter if I am carrying all passports!” The western sense of entitlement was on abundant display! And so was Vietnam’s corruption J all in all, everything was always sorted amicably. Our documentation was in place so the official grudgingly stamped the visa and shooed us away. Immigration was a breeze after this. But visa stamping took us so long that our baggage was already moved away from the belt.